The Times West Virginian

Local News

February 1, 2014

Morrison: ‘Commit to excellence’

Fairmont native delivers address at FEB’s 19th annual Groundhog Day Breakfast

FAIRMONT — Morris Morrison, a Fairmont native, nationally known motivational speaker and entrepreneur, urged business leaders in the community to always strive for excellence.

He was the guest speaker during First Exchange Bank’s 19th annual Groundhog Day Breakfast Friday morning. The free event, held at the Robert H. Mollohan Research Center in Fairmont’s I-79 Technology Park, had a near-record crowd of more than 250 people. This year’s theme was “Forecasting Your Success.”

Morrison, owner of The Morris Morrison Development Group LLC, kept the audience entertained and inspired by talking about his own life and telling tales of lessons learned. During his high-energy presentation, he offered advice on how individuals can position themselves for success.

Originally from New York City, Morrison was left an orphan as a baby after his birth parents died. When he was around 1 year old, he went to live with his adoptive parents in Fairmont, where he grew up. He later lost his adoptive parents as a teen.

When Morrison was 15 years old, he visited the woman who raised him — whom he called his grandmother and “his angel” — at Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown for the last time before she passed away. He held her hand and promised her that he would be successful and do something with his life.

Morrison became dedicated to doing everything he could to keep that promise.

He earned his undergraduate degree from Fairmont State, where he got a chance to play basketball and served as student body president and president of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc. He went on to obtain his master’s degree from WVU and to work for companies like Equitable Resources, BB&T Bank and Pfizer Inc. He now lives in Lake Norman, N.C.

Morrison credits the state for the skill sets he learned and the business success he has achieved, and praised West Virginia’s colleges and universities for producing good products.

“West Virginia has a level of pride unlike any other state I’ve ever seen,” he said.

He said businesses that are thriving today have strong leadership and a positive work culture, and also welcome change. Morrison told the audience members at the breakfast that in order to see business success, they have to keep growing personally and professionally.

“When you commit to excellence, it changes everything,” he said.

Individuals should use their gifts to help their community and follow their instincts, which will help lead to business growth, Morrison said. He encouraged the crowd  members to surround themselves with people who inspire them.

“Powerful things happen when we associate ourselves with the right people,” he said.

Morrison told the story of meeting his other grandmother for the first time just five months before he married his wife, Lisa. He said getting to hug his grandmother that day was one of the most powerful moments of his life, and he was able to dance with her at his wedding.

Morrison explained that his two grandmother figures had actually communicated years ago and put their differences aside to work together to support him. Just like that, business leaders must also come together to make Marion County and West Virginia strong, he said.

President and CEO Bill Goettel talked about some of First Exchange Bank’s keys to business success.

For more than 81 years, the bank has been working hard to meet customers’ needs, he said. The financial institution offers a complete line of products and services, and its employees have positive, can-do attitudes.

First Exchange bank has office locations throughout Marion, Monongalia and Wetzel counties, and will also be adding a mobile app later this year.

“As a community bank, we are looking to meet the needs of the communities we serve in everyday life,” Goettel said.

Bill Yoho, vice chairman of First Exchange Bank’s board of directors, said communication and asking the right questions are essential to achieving financial success and other goals in life.

The bank’s slogan “In Real Life” focuses on customers. If clients are pleased with the banking services, First Exchange Bank is able to grow, he said.

Yoho said the financial institution’s employees live and work in the community and help others. The bank has financed a wide array of loans for projects, homes and vehicles.

“We want to be a part of your success,” he said.

Email Jessica Borders at jborders@timeswv.com or follow her on Twitter @JBordersTWV.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • Bush’s murder convictions reinstated

    Phillip Reese Bush had his two first-degree murder convictions reinstated on Wednesday.
    The Memorandum Decision was handed down by the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals. This decision reversed the Ohio County Circuit Court order from February 2013 that granted Bush a new trial.

    April 24, 2014

  • Weber would like to be Marion-Fairmont ‘buffer’

    With his six years of experience on Fairmont City Council, Daniel Weber is now running as a candidate for a seat on the Marion County Commission.
    Weber, a retired theater professor from Fairmont State University, said while he was teaching at the university he wanted to run for House of Delegates but couldn’t because he worked at FSU. It would have been a conflict of interest because delegates choose higher educators pay.

    April 24, 2014

  • Opposition to Worthington’s annexation proposal surfaces

    There was some opposition to the Town of Worthington’s annexation proposal.
    A public hearing was held Wednesday at the Marion County Commission meeting for the annexation of 43.28 acres into Worthington. Commissioners heard opinions on the matter but did not vote on the issue.

    April 24, 2014

  • Mailing on voter registration prompts questions

    Concerned voters started calling in to the Marion County Clerk’s office Wednesday after receiving a mailing from the Americans for Prosperity Foundation on voter registration.

    April 24, 2014

  • Farmington addresses problem properties

    The Town of Farmington is focusing on property maintenance, water and sewer issues.
    During its meeting on Monday night, council agreed to adopt the International Property Maintenance Code. This code, along with the town’s ordinance, will allow Farmington to better address some problem properties.

    April 24, 2014

  • (Main) Jay Rockefeller-EG.jpg ‘Something hard’ for Rockefeller turns out to be devotion to service

    U.S. Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., returned to West Virginia Wesleyan College Tuesday to host a public policy forum and reflect upon his time in public service.

    April 23, 2014 2 Photos

  • 042314 Chuckie Sanders-EG.jpg Sanders now eligible for parole

    Chuckie Sanders is eligible for parole today.
    Not bitter about the 20 years he’s served, Sanders, 52, acknowledges the crime he was charged with, the drug habit that clouded his judgment and the debt he had to pay to society.

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • Home-rule application approved by council

    Fairmont City Council approved on Tuesday submitting the city’s home-rule application to the home-rule board.

    April 23, 2014

  • Tennant hopes to keep county commission seat

    Burley “Butch” Tennant is not a stranger to the Marion County Commission.
    As the current president of the county commission, he started serving the six-year term in 2008.

    April 23, 2014

  • Gee and McKinley at WVU Healthcare Forum-EG.jpg Access to health care challenge to state

    Access to health care, and technology to better facilitate that care, is a big challenge in the rural areas of West Virginia.

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
TWV Video Highlights
NDN Editor's Picks
House Ads